Call us now ! Send us an email Edgewood Rd Asheville United States

Back to Top

Call us now!
(828) 658-9448
Call us now!
(828) 658-9448

Tutoring K-12 | Red Flags

Contact Information
Arden Reading Clinic
Phone: 828-658-9448
Fax: 828-658-1660
Email Us
Arden Reading Clinic South
1 Edgewood Road Extension
Asheville, NC 28803

Arden Reading Clinic North
383 Weaverville Hwy.
Asheville, NC 28804
Office Hours
Monday-Friday: 8am-9pm
Saturday: Call for options

How do you determine if your child needs tutoring? If they truly warrant outside help? “Should I or shouldn’t I worry?” This question has kept many a parent awake at night. The red flags listed below are designed to assist you in making decisions regarding what is right for your child’s future.

Reading Comprehension
One of the most compelling findings from recent reading research is that children who get off to a poor start in reading rarely catch up (Torgesen, 1998). The poor first-grade reader almost invariably continues to be a poor reader (Francis, Shaywitz, Stuebing, Shaywitz, & Fletcher, 1996; Torgesen & Burgess, 1988). The consequences of a slow start in reading become monumental as they grow over time. The best solution to the problem of reading failure is to allocate resources for early identification and prevention.
Kindergarten is the grade during which to begin intervention. Children who are behind at the end of first grade have only a one-in-five to one-in-eight chance of being on grade level (Moats, 1999).

Red Flags

  • Student sees the first letter of a word and says another word with a similar composition.
    Example: please for polite.
  • Cannot read a non-memorized word.
  • Must have pictures to assist in reading of text. (Beginning readers)
  • Knows a word on one page, but not on the next.
  • Inserts, omits, reverses, and transposes sounds in words while reading and spelling.
  • Consistently loses place on page of text.
  • No word attack skills (decoding).
             boat = b/b/ oa/o/ t/t/
           bright = br/Br/ igh/I/ t/t/

  • Unable to break apart words into syllable types.
            closed syllables: rabbit = rab bit
            open/closed syllables: silent = si lent
            r-controlled/vowel digraph syllables: harpoon = har poon
  • Reads words beautifully, but has no comprehension of text at end of paragraph and/or page.
  • Reading is slow and labored, choppy cadence (not smooth) and often will ignore punctuation.
  • Weak vocabulary - does not know how to derive meaning from word parts.
    Example: take off the prefix, take off the suffix, look at the root - Greek or Latin = combine all parts together to get the meaning of the word.


Often a child's verbal language skills do not evidence themselves in written form. Research suggests that the reason a child's intelligence and abilities are not apparent when looking at something they wrote is because writing is a written language process. Due to the many cognitive processes involved in writing, students often find their thought lines overloaded and writing soon becomes the enemy.

Red Flags

  • Handwriting is illegible (trouble with spacing, uneven slant, overly large/small/cramped handwriting).
  • Speaks more easily about a topic than writes about it.
  • Does not understand the four main important parts of speech.
  • Major misspellings, often written phonetically at best, therefore, student writes short, flat sentences.
    Example: The nurse was nice to me versusThe nurse was gentle, as her hands delicately bandaged the deep gash on my forehead.
  • Inadequate understanding of punctuation, grammar, and syntax.
  • Poor sentence structure (run-ons, fragments, choppy) and an inadequate understanding of the paragraph.
  • Awkward planning, organizing thoughts, getting started. Writes outside of the intended subject area; begins to "free associate" and loses the main ides of the paper.
  • Difficulty taking notes and summarizing what has been read or heard.
  • Does not understand writing as an extension of the thought process.

Mathematics is a systematic scientific form of language. Mathematical language is acquired as the student moves through a logical sequence of steps, proceeding from part to whole. If at any time the student cannot integrate one step into the next, it is truly impossible to move on. This is where students often become stuck. They cannot move forward because the concept previously taught has not been fully integrated. This creates what schools commonly refer to as 'gap' areas in the learning continuum. Rest assured these 'gaps' can be filled in, but a foundation must be secured.

Red Flags

  • Trouble remembering which way to work a math problem.
  • Transferring numbers from board to paper and/or text to paper.
  • Omitting steps in a sequence to solve a problem.
  • Student learns to solve mathematical problems, but later (that day, next day) appears to have forgotten and does not know how to begin.
  • Reversing the order of steps to solve a problem.
  • Unable to memorize non-meaningful facts (those not personally interesting or relevant).
    Example: multiplication tables
  • Time concepts.
    Example: must understand fractions before time concepts - be home at quarter to five.

Organization/Study Skills

Keeping oneself organized is half the battle of a good grade; the other half is the student's own cognitive base knowledge. No more evident is this than in the middle school/high school years when it rears its ugly head, and you see your child drowning in a sea of unfinished papers. The transition years (5th grade/8th grade) are the perfect years to begin to create a template that will fit the unique learning style of the student.

Red Flags

  • Crams all work into book bag and later cannot find necessary homework.
  • Desk at school and home looks like the inside of the book bag.
  • Constantly forgets to bring home homework, books, or materials for project.
  • Waits until the eleventh hour to do an assignment.
  • Cannot seem to get homework started, then moves haphazardly from one subject to the next never really completing anything in full.
  • Homework is taking hours, leaving both parent and child frustrated.
  • Feels validated in their reasoning for why homework could not get turned in on time. Unable to accept responsibility for self (bad teacher, therefore, don't care if I get a bad grade in his or her class).

Systematic Language Instruction

Our method of instruction is Orton-Gillingham, a multi-sensory approach which involves using visual, auditory, and kinesthetic modes, simultaneously, to create neuropathways for learning.

Our language program is a comprehensive, multisensory program for reading, spelling, cursive handwriting, and alphabet and dictionary skills. This is a program designed for any age. The following methods are integral to our program.

  1. Simultaneous Multisensory Techniques-presenting information visually, auditory, and kinesthetically using all learning pathways simultaneous to enhance memory and learning.

  2. Guided Discovery-teacher presentations combined with a series of carefully structured questions to actively involve students in the learning process (a method that develops problem solving techniques applicable to other areas of learning). Must be systematic and cumulative.

  3. Direct Instruction-perscriptive and individualized.

  4. Regularly Scheduled & Reinforcement-lots of synthetic and analytic instruction